Cleansing Oils

As promised, here is the long-awaited cleansing oils post!

The first cleansing oil I ever tried was more than ten years ago (*gasp*) from shu uemura. Back in thooose days they only made one and it was the original and I liked it. However while I was interested in makeup back then I more perhaps more a collector as I was still in my shell and not that comfortable in expressing myself makeup wise especially when people around me are usually makeup free or went for the really subtle look. Most of what I bought all looked untouched and were very pristine. Ahhh if only I held onto those products … [help I’m being sucked down the memory lane via the road called ‘Regret’!] All those ME shadows, blushes, my Feu d’Issey perfume, my McQueen Kingdom fragrance …

What I want to say is I liked the oil but I never had a full face of makeup to really test its performance. Then I remember trying the new release pink sakura cleansing oil and it broke me out. And since then I’ve moved on and stayed away from cleansing oils.

Come to think of it I actually used a lot of shu uemura skincare at the time. Like the whole set from cleansing to serums and creams and sheet masks. It’s been a long time since I looked at their skincare and it seems they have completely changed their range. I remember when they first launched all those depsea water sprays too …

I found this on the shu uemura website:

shu oils

I remember using bottles of the 1996 packaging for my cleanser and toner. That just means pre 2002 you know.

I gave oils another chance when I got a gift with purchase oil from Sofina. And then I came across the DHC oil at a Monoprix (too bad it wasn’t my local one). Then I got the L’Oreal oil. And then I bought the foam oil from Softymo. I actually wanted the regular one but only found the foam version at the shops I went to in HK. And when that is gone I’ll use the Fancl – I’m really looking forward to using that! [ETA: the review for Fancl is here]


Here’s a quick summary:

The contenders:
1. Sofina jenne
2. DHC
3. L’Oreal Eclat Sublime
4. Kose Softymo Speedy Bubble Cleansing Oil (more…)

November Empties


La Roche-Posay TolerianeMade in France
Yup, another tube of these. I dreaded going to City Pharma because of the volume of people and the queues and all that so I would stockpile (reasonably) whenever I went there. So I’ve actually been tapping into that stash the past couple of months. Now that I work around the corner I’ve stopped buying backups and really, the waiting has improved a lot after they added more tills and cashiers. I even go there during my lunch break and usually have a maximum of two people in front of me to pay. This is the last tube of Toleriane you will see for a while. I’m trying a new moisturiser also from La Roche-Posay at the moment.

Repurchase? I will always come back to this no-frills cream.

Melvita Shampoo for frequent wash (200ml) – Made in France
This is one of the first products I’ve tried from Melvita. It is probably the best sulfate-free and organic shampoo I’ve used. I should add that I’m not a fanatic with organic beauty products and I’m really not picky with shampoos either. I’ve tried a few organic and sulfate-free ones in the past and my main beef with these type of shampoos is the lack of lather (sulfates). The worst for me was one from Bioderma, it was in a green bottle and almost as runny as water. I don’t need huge foam but I do appreciate some sort of lather without having to use an outrageous amount of product. And on that end Melvita delivers. This shampoo is runnier than the regular sulfate ones but it still has some ‘body’ to it. It contains honey, arnica, lemon myrtle and grapefruit and it smells like honeyed grapefruit. This is an ECOCERT product, meaning 99.42% of the total ingredients are from natural origin. Looking at the list it also has lavendar water (high on the list) lactic acid and various gums.

Repurchase? Yes, I think I will get the bigger size.

Melvita Conditioner for normal hair (200ml) – Made in France
A literal translation of the French name for this is detangling balm. This conditioner has honey, eucalyptus and lemon myrtle. The smell is a mix of lemon and eucalyptus, a herbally fresh scent. Melvita doesn’t seem to have a dedicated conditioner to go with the frequent wash shampoo and this is the one I was recommended to get. On the ingredients lists are many different kinds of oils including macadamia ternifolia seed, pumpkin seed, sweet almond, soybean, lemon peel etc. I’m quite happy with this conditioner.

Repurchase? Yes.


Project 2 x 5 Pan Update #4


I’ve finally hit pan!! Yes!! I accomplished this back in July actually, just before going away on a weekend. I know documented this with glee when it happened but I couldn’t for the life of me find that first picture. Anyway, the product I’ve finally hit pan on is the Sofina powder foundation, which was reviewed in depth/death here. It’s a good foundation that performs particularly well in summer. I’m still hoping I can hit pan on one of the blushes by the end of the year (it will be either the NARS or the Chanel) but they are just so resistant. Here are the most used products from where I left off last, meaning you get July to September! I’ll do October and November together.


Sofina Primavista – PAN!!

Sofina Primavista Multicover Base
This really helps on those hot summer days.

Clarins Instant Light Complexion Perfector
Also used in June.

Clinique AIrbrush Concealer in 04 Neutral Fair
This was something I bought just before the ‘no buy’ (ha-ha) that I finally opened and used when I binned the Cargo. I thought it has visible shimmer but it actually doesn’t, and just brightens the undereye area. I really like this product.

KIKO Perfect Eyes Duo Highlighter Pencil
Great nifty product – on one end a matte beige shade to highlight just underneath the arch of the brows and the other, a shimmery champagne to highlight the inner corners of the eyes. I know I’m on no-buy but this is a really good idea and it’s cheap and I can’t resist.

SANA Superquick Gel Pencilliner in EX Real Black
This is when I opened my backup and pretty much started using it every single day.

Clinique Cream Shaper in Egyptian
Still going strong.


Project 2 x 5 Pan – Update #3


The post you’re about to read was written 3 months (!!) ago. Somehow it was never published and was sitting there all this time. Between then and now, I’ve got a Nintendo 3DSXL (damn you Animal Crossing and Luigi) and have been kept very busy. Now that the weather is getting cooler, I’ve also started knitting again. I’ve just completed a scarf for the Man in fact! All this to say really, that I’m bummed to have neglected this blog for so long. I’ll quickly publish this old post nonetheless and write some new ones to compensate my absence.

Beginning of my intended post for June:

I’d like to address the lack of empties post for June – simply put, there were none. I thought I would have a few but they’re all going to be in the July post. I did use up (yet another) Yves Rocher shower gel. This one was the witch hazel, the Hamamelis whose delicate scent I really enjoyed. It was also very creamy and nourishing. I don’t have a photo of it because the bottle was thrown out before I had a chance to take a snap. Anyway, moving on.

Project 10 pan is still going even though (once again) I have indulged in more LE items. They were Chanel Taboo & Pygmalion Coco shine. Can you blame me?

Honestly this must be the most lenient pan project ever documented … Here are the most used products during the last 2 months:

Lunasol Skin Fusing Powder Foundation & RMK powder foundation
The Lunasol is the one on the left. I don’t have the name for the RMK one unfortunately. They are both ancient to be honest, purchased when my complexion was much paler. My neck is still much paler than my face and these lighter shades helped with unifying.

Once again I’m reminded of how amazing the foundations from these two companies are. Especially Lunasol – this is their first generation of their Skin Fusing powder foundation and it still blows me away. The shade I have above is OC03, and 103L for RMK. It may look like it in the picture but there is no red in the RMK, it’s just darker than the Lunasol. I’ve been carrying the RMK one in case I needed to touch up during the day.

The dip in the Lunasol happened this month. (more…)

Still a good one: Bobbi Brown Brightening Powder foundation

Having wrote about the Sofina Primavista powder foundation, I just wanted to share my other go-to powder foundation with you. This is like a companion post.

I’m really a powder foundation kind of girl. I know liquid gives a more beautiful finish but powder is just so convenient, there’s no mess and I can take it around with me without hassle.
I’ve tried many over the years, some of course were better than others. All of the ones I tried (except the one featured in this post) are Japanese brands and often they market them as dry/wet use, what used to be known as “two-way cake”. Using it wet means you can enjoy the finish of a liquid foundation with your powder, so it’s two products for the price of one.

Nowadays powder foundation are capable of delivering the same results as their liquid counterparts even when used dry. I guess that’s why ladies behind the makeup counter don’t even mention the wet application anymore, and we rarely hear them referred to by that moniker.

A lot of luxury brands/European houses make powder foundation. But for some reason I usually turn to them for liquid foundation although I hear Dior makes some really good ones. In fact they just released the Nude powder compact foundation (together with the Nude liquid and a series of Nude lipsticks). I swatched this on the back of my hand today and they are very finely milled, very … ‘nude’ and yes, does remind me of Lunasol, which is the standout brand for me in terms of quality among all the ones I’ve tried.

The Bobbi Brown Brightening Powder Compact Foundation (SPF25 PA+++) is I believe, an Asia exclusive. It is part of their brightening range of skincare and makeup. I bought this two years ago during my travel. (more…)

Sofina Primavista – Multi Cover Base UV

This is the third and final part to the Sofina Primavista range. I have already covered the liquid foundation and the powder foundation.

As of writing there are three foundation primers in the Primavista range. The ‘Long Keep Base’ which is about oil and shine control that extends the wear of your foundation; the ‘Moisture Coat’ that combats dryness and makes foundation go on and adhere better to the skin; and the third ‘Multi Cover Base’ which is what I’ll review.

Sofina Primavista – Powder Foundation UV

This post is the second of a 3-part review of the Sofina Primavista products I purchased. You can read about the liquid foundation here, where you’ll find an overview of the Primavista range as well. For the ‘Multi Cover Base’ primer, click here.

Jan 2016: Just want to say my new fave is the Maquillage Dramatic Powdery UV Foundation


The Sofina Primavista powder foundation, like its liquid counterpart has an SPF of 25 with PA++. This is the ‘Long Keep’ foundation, there is also one called ‘Perfect Fit’. Shade is 07, their darkest available. Let me just say right off the bat that I like the powder foundation much more than the liquid. (more…)